News In Brief
A Philips Electronics subsidiary will lay off 80 percent of its workforce, or 1,500 people, and move most of its operations to Mexico, it announced. The Ottawa, Ohio, facility makes television picture tubes. Philips is transferring the work to cut costs and because of declining sales, a spokesman said.
More than $35 billion - seven times the amount projected - was raised in an auction of new-generation mobile phone licenses by the British treasury. The winners: Vodafone AirTouch, British Telecom, German-owned One2One Personal Communications and Orange 3G, and Canada's TIW UMTS. The 20-year licenses cover emerging technologies that transform cellphones into personal computers able to access the Internet, receive e-mail, and display video.
Greater access to one of the world's largest and fastest-growing middle classes was behind the $1.3 billion purchase of Australia & New Zealand Banking Group's Grindlays division by London-based Standard Chartered Plc., the latter said. Grindlays operates 116 branches in 13 countries, but most of its 870,000 customers are in India. The all-cash deal, if approved by regulators, will more than double Standard Chartered's presence in the South Asian market and will make it the largest foreign-owned bank in India.
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